I find it extremely ironic that in the painting that I was working on last night I wrote the word breathe because of the meaning of the painting, but that was exactly what I was having a hard time doing. Right now I use odorless turpentine which I dip my brush in often to keep a point and thin my paint. I think because I started out as a watercolor artist turpentine sort of replaced water in my painting process. Last year when I was painting for my show I got sick from the constant exposure to everything in my studio. I have since aquired an air purifier (especially for oil painters) and try to keep my windows open while I am painting. I know that many artists will get sick from the petroleum distillates contained in many of the mediums oil painters use. Does anyone have a suggestion of what else I can use without having to change my process?
I will never forget when I was fourteen and visited my grandmother in a nursing home. She, along with the other residents were sitting in chairs lined up in front of a large window... that was all they did just sit and watch the world go on around them. I remember thinking at the time that it was like she was a goldfish in a bowl. It made such an impression on me. In my paintings each time you see a goldfish it represents life, and mortality. This woman is in motion which is new for me, and fun to play with. If you ever wonder if my paintings are full of symbolism the answer is yes. Sometimes I am happy to share and other times I feel like I have been caught when someone figures something out. The other day Jenn from Coda called and asked about some writing in a particular painting that she and a client had been studying. I wished I had been more subtle with what I wrote in that painting. Oops!